Painters are often driven to recreate a specific moment in time that inspired them to create in the first place. The information they process, visualize and ultimately realize in their work is the product of their intrepid experimentation that strives to bring the viewer to that place of inspiration. From warm summer parties to cold architectural cityscapes, the best painters don‘t just recreate what they see, but what they felt in that moment of inspiration.
As a rule, Michael Conrads (b.1977 Grevenbroich) creates paintings that exist a realm of measured geometric landscapes and spatial illusions. observed while traveling. Having completed residencies in Europe and North America, His palette ranges from the stark highly saturated colors of European summer and the natural, vibrant pastel hues apparent in desert plants that inform the colors of Mexican architecture. This harmonious approach allows the work to feel natural and of human origin at once. He takes an atmospheric moment and overwhelms the viewer with color, texture, movement, and material while never straying far from the original inspiration.
In the paintings that appear in his current exhibition, „Superimpositions“, Conrads is working on a smaller, more focused, scale. The works, strictly oil on canvas mounted on board, show very tideous compositions and a bright, pure color palette- damped primaries and secondaries get highlighted by pure whites or pastel neons, forming vivid, dynamic constructions in which the eye itself can go traveling.
„I feel my paintings tend to get quite intense at times. It can get pretty overwhelming for the spectator and for me while painting. I feel I can be more precise in my articulation when working on smaller formats, while still having the freedom to pack them with colors in a way that I probably wouldn´t on a larger scale. Also, the idea of just going anywhere to work, without a huge studio setup and the paintings in my suitcase was appealing to me“
This approach somehow seems appropriate in these Coronial times where our movement to other lands is restricted and all we have left are the paintings that help transport us to that atmospheric space.
The shapes of these paintings might also remind of broken pieces or fractures. Pieces that fall apart and become reasembled in a new order within a painting, representing a process of ever reconstructing and arranging of a fractured, scattered maybe unsettled way of life.